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Otherworld Theatre Presents Violet Surprise: Femslash Fest

Otherworld Theatre Presents Violet Surprise: Femslash Fest

Iris Sowlat and Allison Fradkin, in collaboration with Otherworld Theatre Company, present Violet Surprise, a festival of femslash fanfiction parodies.

The eleven short plays featured in Violet Surprise envision queer narratives and relationships for female characters from literature, TV, film, and theatre. Our playwrights, who saw Sapphic subtext in everything from sitcoms to Shakespeare, positively parody that subtext within the world of the original fandom. Producer Iris Sowlat calls this "queering the canon."

Sowlat says, "For centuries, queer people have always had to ask What if? - in both popular culture and in life. Until recently, queer creators needed to keep queer themes subtle or coded, and there wasn't much representation of queer relationships in pop culture at all. We never had a gay equivalent of I Love Lucy. Fanfiction is a way of taking ownership of the creative narratives present in our mainstream and re-imagining that What if."

Performance Dates, Times, & Location:

August 9 & 10 at 7:30pm

August 11 at 3:00pm

Otherworld Theatre

Located at 3914 N. Clark St., Chicago

Tickets are Pay-What-You-Can and can be purchased online or at the door.

Featured Plays

"Anne and Diana Were Totally Doing It"

Written by Rosemary Rowe

Directed by Bex Ehrmann

A parody of Anne of Green Gables

"Checkerboard Chicks"

Written by Allison Fradkin

Directed by Natividad Uehara

A parody of That's So Raven

"However You Like It; Or, Whatever You Want"

Written by Jessica Moss

Directed by Bex Ehrmann

A parody of Shakespeare's Twelfth Night and As You Like It


Written by Iris Sowlat

Directed by Aliza Feder

A parody of Wicked

"I Really Love Lucy"

Written by Eileen Mitchell

Directed by Iris Sowlat

A parody of I Love Lucy

"Lady Cops"

Written by Rachael Carnes

Directed by Cathy Crocco

A parody of Cagney & Lacey

"Purple Is the Warmest Color"

Written by Naomi Phoenix Victoria

Directed by Michelle Altman

A parody of The Avengers

"Ravenclaw Tower"

Written by Brynne Frauenhoffer

Directed by Whitney Pipes

A parody of Harry Potter

"Sharing the Dress"

Written by Martha Patterson

Directed by Hannah Baker

A parody of The Mary Tyler Moore Show

"Slipper Tongue"

Written by Brianna Barrett

Directed by Aliza Feder

A parody of Cinderella

"You're My Person"

Written by Leanna Keyes

Directed by Nemo Serges

A parody of Grey's Anatomy

Otherworld Theatre Company was founded in June 2012 with the mission to bring a theatrical experience to the science fiction and fantasy genre. Their work celebrates the depth of human imagination by engaging spectators with high-quality storytelling. Otherworld Theatre also curates events to create dialogue between patrons and artists, furthering their connection to the Chicago community. Led by Artistic Director Tiffany Keane Schaeffer, Otherworld moved into their first permanent home on Clark Street last year.

Iris Sowlat is a Chicago-based director specializing in new work with feminist and queer themes, often told through an unexpected lens. Directing credits include Joan of Arc and Underworld Anthem (RhinoFest), The Bear (Accidental Shakespeare Co.), The Days Are Shorter (Pride Films & Plays), and many more! Iris has also worked with About Face Theatre, Northlight Theatre, Broken Nose, Collaboraction, Global Hive Laboratories, and NoPassport Theatre Alliance. She is a proud Artistic Associate at Stage Left. In 2018, Iris was named one of "30 Under 30" by Windy City Times.

Allison Fradkin is a playwright with thespian tendencies. Scriptly speaking, she creates satirically scintillating lesbian-feminist plays that have been featured in festivals nationwide, most recently with Broken Nose Theatre, New American Folk Theatre, Queer Theatre Kalamazoo, and Orange County Arts Council. She has worked with Underscore Theatre Company, providing project development assistance to librettists and composers; and Pride Films & Plays, for whom she served as Literary Coordinator of the LezPlay Contest, Producer of LezFest, and Co-Producer (with Iris Sowlat) of the History Lezons play festival. Presently, she plays the part of Dramatist for Special Gifts Theatre, adapting scripts for actors of all abilities; and acts as Literary Manager of Violet Surprise, curating new works by female-identifying, trans, and non-binary playwrights.

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